Social media flexes its censorship muscles

Increasing tendency towards censorship is losing them some users

Social media flexes its censorship musclesFacebook, Google and Twitter have enjoyed market dominance for more than a decade. And their increasing tendency towards censorship has lost them some users. Although censorship isn’t welcome, it has given social media a chance to reinvent itself out of near-monopolistic dominance. Ironically, the first loser in the info wars was Alex Jones. Accounts for…

Freedom of the press? Not in an era of internet censorship

Freedom of the press will diminish as long as the new culture of controlling online content persists

Freedom of the press? Not in an era of internet censorshipIn November, the winner of the first Canada-United Kingdom Media Freedom Award was announced by government representatives. The prize is designed to promote free press globally and encourage other nations to improve security for reporters. It was awarded to the Belarusian Association of Journalists. The association from Minsk has won several awards for its work…

CRTC overreaching with its proposed internet regulations

The goal is less about the interests of consumers and more about funnelling money to special interest groups

CRTC overreaching with its proposed internet regulationsWere the consequences not so serious, Canada’s chaotic venture into the regulation of content on the Web might be consigned to the realm of thigh-slapping farce. The government’s goal, it was learned last week, will be to focus programming funding on the needs of ethnic, racial, language and sexual identities in a fashion so ill-defined…

Good Seuss, bad Seuss, less Seuss, no Seuss?

Ignoring, desensitizing or eliminating history is the wrong approach. Learning, engaging and explaining will have a more positive effect

Good Seuss, bad Seuss, less Seuss, no Seuss?Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel was one of the world’s most influential authors of children’s literature. The talented political cartoonist, illustrator and poet released over 60 memorable and beloved tales. Those tales included The Cat in the Hat, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories, Bartholomew and the Oobleck, Green Eggs and…

In praise of trashy paperbacks

What could be bad about stories that are pacey, and replete with nefarious dealings, treachery, passion and lust? They're great fun and you won't nod off reading them

In praise of trashy paperbacksApart from childhood forays into the likes of Robert Louis Stevenson and Sir Walter Scott, most of my fiction reading was done in the 1960s and 1970s. And the ubiquity of reasonably-priced paperback novels was a huge facilitator. A goodly portion of what I consumed can be described as respectable. Somerset Maugham, John O’Hara and…

Federal digital charter just a new weapon in the censorship arsenal

Politicians and tech firms can co-opt legitimate concerns to restrict speech, stifle criticism and tilt public debates

Federal digital charter just a new weapon in the censorship arsenalOn May 21, the federal government unveiled a lengthy “digital charter” with the noble goals of expanded Internet access and more trust online. If you peel back the feel-good 10 principles and stated justifications, however, you find a new weapon in the censor arsenal. “The platforms are failing their users, and they’re failing our citizens.…

Does federal panel pose a threat to net neutrality in Canada?

By early 2020, we’ll know what the members think the government should do to modernize decrepit legislation

Does federal panel pose a threat to net neutrality in Canada?If you want to know how much in extra fees you might be paying or how much Canada intends to meddle with online content to make sure you watch what the government wants you to watch, you should start paying attention now. This week, the government panel reviewing the nation’s broadcasting and telecommunications legislation (known…

We can’t put a price on free speech

Universities should defend unpopular speech, not politicians who use funding as leverage

We can’t put a price on free speechLike a soundtrack on endless repeat, universities have come around again to the one about free speech. It’s an old song. The chorus goes something like, “Universities must support freedom of expression.” It’s not the catchiest tune but like the national anthem, it’s a song to sing with heart. One person who sings loudly and…